• GillianUssherArt


With a very personal composition piece like this it can be difficult to know what elements to prioritise, but the client who commissioned this had a firm idea of the layout, the exact text and placement she wanted. I had many photos of Bono to work from, and extra reference photographs of details such as the badge and the colouring of the flag.

Bono was retired from The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Corrections, and the artwork was to feature the badge alongside a portrait of Bono with wording underneath, completed with a backdrop of the Department of Corrections flag.

This was the first (very faint!) sketch showing the planned layout of the artwork.

Bono's portrait in progress.

I decided to add the flag background at the end as I was working with such dark colours. I added some blue reflection to Bono's face and some Bono-coloured reflection to the badge to help bring it all together.

Drawing the badge took up most of the time I spent on this piece! Such fine detail, and all so important so nothing could be vague or rushed.

The complete piece showing the Department of Corrections flag and the beautiful piece of writing chosen by the client.

The client chose a blue/grey mount and a black frame which I think complete the artwork perfectly.

Bono's portrait was drawn with Faber Castell Pitt Pastel Pencils and Unison Soft Pastel on Daler Rowney Ingres Pastel Paper and measures 16" x 12" / 40 x 30cm.

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